Rizzoli Bookstore May Have to Flee the Wrecking Ball, Again
Twenty-nine years ago, Rizzoli Bookstore, whose Old World charm, hand-wrought chandeliers and big storefront windows make it a favorite of noted authors, book lovers and tourists, fled Fifth Avenue two steps ahead of the wrecking ball.
It may now have to take flight again.
The owners of the building at 31 West 57th Street near Fifth Avenue that houses Rizzoli — the LeFrak real estate family and Vornado Realty Trust — recently gave the bookstore the bad news: They plan to demolish the six-story, 109-year-old building, as well as two small, adjoining buildings.
The developers may not be talking. But many authors, publishers and preservationists were distraught over the possible fate of one of Manhattan’s most revered bookstores and the former mansion it has called home for nearly three decades.
“We’re losing yet another literary landmark in Midtown,” said Michael Signorelli, senior editor at the publisher Henry Holt. “Rizzoli has three magnificent floors of books.”